Cultural tourism in Tanzania started as a program to help rural communities enjoy the benefit of tourism sector in which they are a part of. The program is the effort and initiatives of tour agents whom are directly involved in Tanzania's community development programs, especially in the rural areas. The main goal is that rural communities should directly benefit from tourists who visit their areas. Cultural tourism allows local people such as Masaai & Wa-Arusha, Swahili, and Chagga to offer tours that show their culture, their sacred places of worship, economic activities, for example, farming, pastoralism and fishing. The income generated is used by local people for specific development programs, such as, the building of dispensaries, schools and cattle dip sites.
In many areas, rural life is an attraction on its own. Carefully cultivated plots and lush tropical vegetation form a backdrop for simple traditional houses. Women in colorful dresses carry buckets of water and bunches of firewood back home. Villagers participate in development projects, from irrigation systems to primary schools. The people are willing to receive tourists and show them daily life, culture and scenery in their villages. They see tourism as an activity that can create employment and generate income, which can be used for improving their living conditions.
At the foot of Mount Kilimanjaro, outside the entrance to Kilimanjaro National Park, lie the beautiful towns of Mamba and Marangu. Here, local people have planned walking tours through valleys and waterfalls depicting mountain village life.
The name Marangu derives from the local Chagga word meaning ‘spring water’ and the village is situated on the lower slopes of Kilimanjaro about 40 km from Moshi town. This program offers a variety of half-day trips taking in various natural and cultural sites on the surrounding slopes. Other walks lead to nearby Mamba and Makundi, known for their traditional Chagga blacksmiths. Magnificent views of valleys and waterfalls offer great entertainment for nature lovers and bird watchers. With more than seven waterfalls in the vicinity one can spend a whole day enjoying the picture postcard views. Walking tours will provide magnificent view overlooking the area including points where the lights of Nairobi can be seen at night.
Walking through the well maintained coffee and banana fields is a pleasure. Visits to tree, flower and fruit nurseries help to portray mountain life and give guests the chance to see a wide range of unique flora and fauna.
Maasai: jewelry, traditional events/dancing, cultural exploration and history can all be explored in a Maasai village day tour. Any village from ‘Olpopongi Village’ to Maasai villages in ‘Arusha’. Experience authentic Maasai life and culture in a 100% traditional Maasai village. Enjoy village/museum tour, traditional lunch, learn maasai hunting techniques and natural maasai medicine and wildlife. The cultural experience with the Masai tribe is held in authentic village in Masai-land of the Arush region. You will experience living in a traditional Boma (Masai home), discovering their family life, look after the cattle, maintain the house,cook and explore the land with an English speaking Masai.
One of the most popular cultural destinations in Tanzania is the famed spice island of Zanzibar. Zanzibar holds a deep sway over the imagination through its historical position as a major maritime trading power in the 19th Century. Streets of the capital Stone Town evoke bygone days with narrow alleyways leading to Mosques, shops and houses. A visit to the House of Wonders gives you an incredible insight into Swahili Culture and the trading and cultural links between Zanzibar, India, the Middle East, Indonesia and China; all connected by the Indian Ocean. We suggest that you spend some time in Stone Town as it really is a unique, ambient, historic town and perhaps a spice tour to see cloves, vanilla, nutmeg and cinnamon being cultivated.
Bushmen - Hadzabe tribe
The cultural experience with the Hadzabe (bushmen) takes you 10,000 years back in the area of mystical Lake Eyasi. Having no permanent home, you will live in homes made from bushes and experience the extreme daily routines of hunting with a bow and arrow in the bush, climbing rocky outcrops to spot pray, gather fruit, and craft precision weapons.
The Hadzabe people are a very delicate culture and every visit should be considered carefully. Since they are a very remote tribe that is not exposed to the modern world, thus anything modern could affect their special way of living